Observations from today’s readings and today’s S-WOD, Monday, 23 July 2022:
Joshua 15 — God blessed by providing His presence, His protection, family, and land. Concerning the latter two, God’s commands are very intentional in the protection of the family, their rightful inheritance, and property rights. When a government establishes laws and policies that threaten family and robs people of inheritance and rights to property, that government is operating against the will of God.
Joshua 15:8 – Then the boundary goes up by the Valley of the Son of Hinnom at the southern shoulder of the Jebusite (that is, Jerusalem). And the boundary goes up to the top of the mountain that lies over against the Valley of Hinnom, on the west, at the northern end of the Valley of Rephaim.
Jerusalem is not part of Judah’s inheritance but Benjamin’s. Interesting….
Psalm 82:1-4 – “Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”
God calls us to be rescuers and defenders of justice, to protect the defenseless.
Psalm 82:5 – “They have neither knowledge nor understanding, they walk about in darkness; all the foundations of the earth are shaken.”
When a nation’s leaders turn from God and no longer have true knowledge or understanding, everything falls apart as if subject to a massive earthquake which comes suddenly and destroys at the foundations of the institutions.
Psalm 82 – God holds leaders accountable for justice and mercy, something that can only be administered by leaders that go the Him and the source of all justice and mercy. In final judgment, God will punish the ungodly and establish justice and mercy personally, once and for all. Jesus will reign on the new earth with His faithful servants.
Proverbs 23:1-3 – When you sit down to eat with a ruler, observe carefully what is before you, and put a knife to your throat if you are given to appetite. Do not desire his delicacies, for they are deceptive food.
Don’t place your hope and trust in government, and don’t compromise your fidelity to God in order to appease worldly leaders or to remain in good standing with those of authority at the expense of obedience to The Authority. The Bible commands that we obey government but not when government tells you to disobey God.
The American Founding Fathers had a healthy distrust of government for good reason. As the saying goes, power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. God gives authority to government, and we are to submit to it. Government is necessary as a means to protect life and property. But any government of man will reflect man’s fallenness and shortcomings, and government often empowers sin. There is no such thing as a Christian nation. There are only are Christian people who may influence a nation and its processes. Christians in America are given a unique access to government, which we should use wisely; but it is important that we maintain perspective on the realities of government. When we start to think that our hope is in government, we are in danger. Political leaders promise many delicacies, but it is deceptive food. There are no gifts from the government that don’t have a string attached.
Proverbs 23:20, 21 – “Be not among drunkards or among gluttonous eaters of meat, for the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, and slumber will clothe them with rags.”
Both alcoholism and gluttony point to a lack of self-control which reveals a deeper spiritual problem because self-control is the fruit of a Spirit-filled life (see Galatians 5). If you are struggling with your diet, the problem isn’t food, look deeper.
Proverbs 23:22 — “Listen to your father who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.”
God’s plan is for a man and woman, a father and mother, to raise up godly children. A man and a woman each represent different attributes of God. They are made intentionally different. Together, as one, they provide balanced life direction to the next generation.
Proverbs 23:27 – “For a prostitute is a deep pit; an adulteress is a narrow well.”
Adultery is like prostitution. In fact, adultery is even viewed as worse than prostitution because prostitutes sin as a means of providing for themselves, but adulterers sin simply for the pleasure of it, destroying families in the process. (Proverbs 6:26)
Proverbs 23:16, 23 – “My inmost being will exult when your lips speak what is right…. Buy truth, and do not sell it; buy wisdom, instruction, and understanding.”
The righteous heart longs to hear the truth.
Proverbs 23:17, 18 — Let not your heart envy sinners, but continue in the fear of the Lord all the day. Surely there is a future, and your hope will not be cut off.
What is the future for you and your family?
Proverbs 23 — God wants to ensure you understand the dangers of inappropriate sexual activity and alcohol abuse.
“Cross” Fit S-WOD (Spiritual Workout of the Day) – 23 Jul 22: Today, don’t miss the opportunity to defend justice, but always do it as and ambassador for the Jesus who is the only hope for justice and peace. If you are going to talk about what is wrong, make sure you always proclaim what is right, the Gospel of Jesus Christ. If Jesus is not the foundation, the house will assuredly fall.